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Press Release

March 14, 2024

Contact: Adam Lynn
Honey Springs Battlefield, Oklahoma Historical Society
Office: 918-617-7125

Women’s History Month Presentation Planned at Honey Springs Battlefield

CHECOTAH, Okla. — Dr. Michelle M. Martin, an assistant professor of history and coordinator of the public history certificate in the Department of History at Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, will present a program for Women’s History Month at Honey Springs Battlefield and Visitor Center. The presentation is scheduled for Saturday, March 30, from 1-2:30 p.m. and is titled “I Thought This Place Doomed: Emma Caroline Morley & Sterling Price’s Failed Raid of 1864.”

In the fall of 1864, Confederate General Sterling Price embarked upon a last-ditch effort to shore up support for the Confederacy in Missouri. In addition, Price sought to launch raids into eastern Kansas and control the all-important military road that ran from Fort Leavenworth to Fort Scott and down into the Indian Territory. At the same time, Emma Caroline Morley, a young woman from Ohio, left the safety of her home and traveled to St. Louis. Emma wanted to secure a position for herself as a nurse at Benton Barracks. When her dream of becoming a nurse was quashed because she was too young, Emma pushed westward to join her brother in Fort Scott, Kansas. Little could Emma know that her travel coincided with Price’s raid. When Emma arrived in Fort Scott, however, Price’s forces were not far behind, and she, along with other townsfolk, evacuated to the Kansas prairie for safety. Despite the danger she faced, Emma kept a diary that provides historians with a unique perspective on the war in the Western theater. Join Dr. Martin as she shares Emma’s amazing story, learn how the war impacted civilians and dive deeper into women’s roles during this critical period in American history.

Dr. Martin is a Michigander by birth and a Kansan and Oklahoman by choice. Martin is a historian who earned her doctorate at the University of New Mexico in May 2022. Her research probes interracial marriage, gender, race and power in the Mvskoke Nation in the Indian Territory from 1870-1897. She earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in history at Western Michigan University. After graduating, Martin embarked on a nearly 20-year career in academic and public history. For nine years, she taught full-time and part-time at the two-year and four-year college levels in Kansas and Oklahoma. She also worked in the television and film industry for nearly 10 years as a researcher, scriptwriter and field producer. She has contributed to projects that aired on PBS, A&E, History Channel, Investigation Discovery and at National Park Service units in Kansas, Missouri and Arkansas. For several years, Martin worked as a museum director, and she has served on numerous museum boards and has provided consulting services for small museums in Kansas and Oklahoma. Martin has also lectured on various historical topics across the country for museums, state and national historic sites, and educational institutions.

The presentation is included with paid admission. After the program, visitors are encouraged to tour the center’s exhibits, view the 3D “The Battle of Honey Springs” film, buy newly stocked items from the gift shop and tour the largest Civil War battlefield in Oklahoma. For more information call 918-617-7125 or email honeysprings@history.ok.gov.

Honey Springs Battlefield is located east of US Highway 69 between Oktaha and Rentiesville. The Visitor Center is located on a hill near the Oklahoma Blues Hall of Fame in Rentiesville. Take the second left after reaching the Oklahoma Blues Hall of Fame Museum (driving from the west).

Honey Springs Battlefield and Visitor Center is a division of the Oklahoma Historical Society. The mission of the Oklahoma Historical Society is to collect, preserve and share the history and culture of the state of Oklahoma and its people. Founded in 1893 by members of the Territorial Press Association, the OHS maintains museums, historic sites and affiliates across the state. Through its research archives, exhibits, educational programs and publications the OHS chronicles the rich history of Oklahoma. For more information about the OHS, please visit www.okhistory.org.


Editor’s Note: Photos of Honey Springs Battlefield and Visitor Center are available upon request.

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